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How We Keep People — and the Planet — Healthy


Health insurance providers embrace environmental stewardship

Published Apr 21, 2022 • by AHIP

Only a small part of health care happens at the doctor’s office. Social factors such as access to nutritious food and safe housing play a large role in a person’s ability to maintain their health. The health of our environment, including sanitation, clean water, and air quality, also has a significant impact on our health and well-being.

There is a clear link between our physical and emotional well-being and the health of the environment. It is also clear that environmental issues have a disproportionate impact on minority and underserved communities.

“We know that environment and health outcomes are linked,” said Kimberley Goode, senior vice president of External Affairs at Blue Shield of California. That’s why — just as they’re taking a more inclusive view of health — health insurance providers are looking broadly at their environmental footprint and opportunities to mitigate their impact.

  • By 2030, Cigna is targeting 100% renewable electricity and zero waste for some of their facilities. The company is also aiming to be carbon neutral in certain sectors by 2040.
  • In 2020, Humana reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 18%, and diverted 66% of their waste from landfills through waste reduction and recycling programs.
  • State Farm has committed to reducing the company’s greenhouse gas emissions by 50% before 2030. Their approach includes reducing waste, energy-efficient facilities, and switching to paperless billing.

Healthy people don’t just need healthy environments. They deserve them. It’s why health insurance providers’ attention to social and environmental issues won’t end when Earth Day does. Learn more about their efforts here.